-----Original Message-----
From:   Friedenthal, Sanford 
Sent:   Friday, February 13, 2004 6:00 PM
To:     'syseng@omg.org'
Cc:     'AlanM@artisansw.com'; 'BurkhartRogerM@JohnDeere.com'; 'fred.cummins@eds.com'; Lutz Lämmer; kaufmann, uwe; David Price; Jim U'Ren

Subject:        Summary of INCOSE IW Review of SysML on Jan 25-26 and SE DSIG Meeting in Anaheim on Feb 3-4, 2004

SE DSIG Members,

The following is a summary of the SysML review at the INCOSE International Workshop (IW) in Portland on January 25 - 26, and of the SE DSIG meetings at the OMG Technical Meeting in Anaheim on February 3-4, 2004.

SysML Review at INCOSE IW
The SysML Partners was established in May 2003 to develop an extension to UML 2 called the Systems Modeling Language (SysML). SysML is intended to address the requirements in the UML for Systems Engineering RFP issued by the OMG on March 28, 2003 (http://syseng.omg.org/UML_for_SE_RFP.htm).

The INCOSE IW review was hosted by the INCOSE Model Driven System Design Working Group (MDSD) and was chaired by Mike Dickerson and Dave Oliver. The SysML Presentation slides from the review can be found on the SysML Partner website at www.sysml.org. The material presented represents the preliminary approach for the UML extension based on the initial draft V0.3 of the SysML specification, which is also available on the SysML site.

SysML extends a subset of UML V2.0 to provide the needed capabilities to specify, analyze, design, and verify systems. The goal for this effort is to release V1.0 of the SysML specification by the end of 2004 which addresses many of the critical requirements in the RFP.  Follow-on enhancements of SysML will address the remaining requirements in the RFP. The primary V1.0 extensions include:

  • Extensions to UML activity diagrams to ensure support for enhanced functional flow block diagrams and other extensions to support continuous behaviors.
  • Refinements to the UML composite structure to represent system components and their interconnections and the associated flow of infromation and physical items between components/parts.
  • A new parametric diagram to assist in representing abstractions of mathematical relationships between component properties to support engineering analysis (i.e. performance, reliability, etc.)
  • A new requirements diagram to explicitly capture requirements and their relationships. This is intended to assist in integrating the SysML models with requirements management tools.
  • Alignment with the ISO AP-233 data interchange standard to support tool interoperability and the exchange of information between SysML modeling tools and other tools in the engineering environment.

The review feedback was quite positive relative to the direction and progress of SysML to date. The outbrief af the INCOSE plenary by Dave and Mike will also be available on the SysML site. In addition, the review team provided some valuable feedback. Jim Long, who is one of the early pioneers in behavior diagrams, helped to clarify some of the semantics of the enhanced functional flow block diagram (EFFBD), which SysML is intended to support. In addition, the INCOSE Requirements Working Group provided some excellent feedback on the requirements diagram. There were approximately 75+ issues that were identified.  The outbrief provided a high level summary of some of the more important issues and/or piriorities for the team. In particular, there was a requrest to provide some level of support for trade studies in the V1.0 capability, and also to provide clear distinctions between the behavior and structure diagrams, as well as hybrid representations of behavior and structure. Many thanks to Mike and Dave and the rest of the review team for their contribution.


The SE DSIG meetings in Anaheim included collaboration actvities with other OMG efforts as described below.::

  • Joint Meeting with ADTF on the SysML Initial Submission
  • MDA and HLA
  • Joint Meeting with MANTIS
  • Joint Meeting with Business Enterprise Integration DTF

SysML Initial Submission Presentation to the ADTF
The SysML Partners presented a breif overview of the initial draft SysML Specification V0.3 posted to the OMG Website on January 12, 2003 (ad/04-01-12). (This is also available from the sysml site). The presentation provided a summary of the specification and highlighted some of the updates to the more detailed technical presentation at the OMG technical meeting in November '2003 in London. The SysML Parters is the single submission team in response to the RFP, and requrested a change to the revised submission date from April 5 to August 2, 2004. The goal is for the August submission to be the final submission to support OMG adoption of SysML V1.0 prior to the end of the year.

The meeting on MDA and HLA was coordinated by Alan Moore and held on Tuesday, February 3 from 09:00 - 15:00. The High Level Architecture (HLA) provides the infrastructure for distributed modeling and simulation. In particular, HLA specifies how a simulation specified as a set of Federates can interact through API's with an underlying runtime infrastructure (RTI) using a form of publish/subscribe implementation. The HLA specifications specify the format for the Federate Object Model (FOM). 

The meeting included three excellent presentations on HLA basics; MDA concepts and its relatioship to HLA ; and a briefing from the Websim conference, where many MDA issues were also raised. These briefings are intended to be available shortly on the SE DSIG site (refer to the Anaheim 2004 meeting link).

The questions being addressed by this meeting involved the relationship between HLA and MDA, and initial discussions on how the OMG might address HLA needs in the context of MDA.. The ensuing discussion concluded that Modelling and Simulation continues to be a very active area where an MDA approach could have significant benefits. In particular, the HLA could potentially be viewed as another target environment for MDA.

It was noted that the Distributed Simulation SIG is about to disband.  Mark Rheinlander of Calytrix, a pioneer in the MDA for HLA area, volunteered to attempt to rekindle interest in this area by providing clarification of the vision and goals for such a group, and identifying key stakeholders who would be willing participants in an OMG forum. Bjorn Moller from Pitch (another HLA vendor), and Jim Tung from MathWorks also participated in the meeting, and showed interest in exploring this further.

Joint SE DSIG / /MANTIS Meeting
The Systems Engineering DSIG met jointly with the Manufacturing and  Industrial Systems Task Force (MANTIS TF) Tuesday afternoon from  3:00-5:00.  Roger Burkhart from the SE DSIG and Uwe Kaufman from MANTIS coordinated the meeting and can be contacted for futher information on this topic. Potential overlapping interests between the SE DSIG and task force had been identified at the previous OMG meeting in London, especially involving the relationship of both groups to ISO STEP.  This includes specific STEP modules such as AP233 (Application Protocol for Systems Engineering) and PLM (Product Lifecycle Management), and the need for both groups to deal with mapping of models between UML and the EXPRESS-based infrastructure used by STEP.

Russell Claus of NASA presented the MANTIS roadmap, which led to extensive discussion about potential common interests besides ISO STEP.  The Knowledge Based Engineering(KBE) RFP currently in preparation could apply to systems engineering to support specification of design rules.  It could also have a relationship to the business rules effort within the Business Enterprise Integration (BEI) task force.  MANTIS reps were invited to attend a joint meeting of the SE DSIG with the BEI TF on the following afternoon.

The CAD Services Version 2 RFP has a revised submission date of June 1, 2004. For systems engineering, it could potentially provide hooks  to physical properties associated with the geometry managed by a CAD system.  Other discussion addressed the need of CAD and PDM systems to support the front end of the design process, where systems engineering puts much of its focus. The Collaboration Services initiative presented to MANTIS earlier in the day was also identified as another area of potential joint interest.

The PLM Services RFP issued by MANTIS now has a single submission that will go through one more revision cycle.  It provides a translation of  STEP Product Lifecycle Management information models into UML, so that they can serve as an MDA Platform Independent Model to revise and extend the previous PDM Enablers specification adopted by OMG, which was based on CORBA. The proposed submission is one of the first uses of the STEP Part 25 draft specification, which provides a mapping from EXPRESS into UML.

Roger Burkhart presented slides provided by David Price of Eurostep, on "Tools for UML/SysML and STEP Integration" (mantis/04-02-06).  These presented tools being developed to support both model and data transformation between STEP and OMG-based infrastructures, which could apply to aligning the PLM and AP233 work in STEP with the corresponding work in OMG.

The general area of STEP to OMG alignment was considered to have such significant interest to both groups that an ongoing liaison contact from the SE DSIG to MANTIS on these topics was suggested.  Jim U'Ren of NASA, chair of STEP AP233 and a member of the SE DSIG, agreed to serve as a liaison between SE DSIG and MANTIS.  Both groups also plan to schedule

Joint SE DSIG// BEITF Meeting
The Systems Engineering DSIG (SE DSIG) met jointly with the Business Enterprise Integration DTF (BEI DTF) Wednesday afternoon from 2:00-4:45. Roger Burkhart from the SE DSIG and Fred Cummins from BEITF coordinated the meeting and can be contacted for futher information on this topic. Potential overlapping interests between the SE DSIG and task force had started being discussed at the previous OMG meeting in London.  These included potentail application of systems modeling capabilities in response to the UML for Systems Engineering RFP to business process design.

After a round of introductions, each group reviewed the major items on their respective roadmaps.  BEI, which had just finalized a merger with the previous Business Rules SIG, is progressing multiple RFPs in area of business process definition, business rules, workflow management, software portfolio, and organization structure.  A business modeling whitepaper is also being written.  The SE DSIG developed the UML for Systems Engineering RFP which is being progressed through the Analysis & Design PTF (ADTF).  A summary was provided of the areas covered by this RFP, which had just received an initial submission from the SysML Partners submission team.

Subsequent discussion reviewed the areas of potential common interest. Some of these had first been raised at the OMG London meeting when SysML Partners gave an initial overview of their submission.  Areas of modeling that could apply to both groups include structure and activity models, requirements management, design rules, and simulation and execution.  In general, business process design can be viewed as one kind of systems engineering design, since people and procedures are typically included in the scope of systems engineering as well as software, hardware, and facilities.  Business design examples could be useful to validate responses to the UML for SE RFP.  Some of the BEI DTF specification are adopting their own metamodels, but the SE work currently depends on extending the UML 2 Superstructure specification.  The two groups had separately encountered common issues such as defining flows within structure models.

An overview of the work on business rules, with particular focus on the Business Semantics of Business Rules RFP for which initial submissions had just been received, was presented by Stan Hendryx.  With its focus on defining vocabularies in which business rules are stated, this work has potential applicability to the precise statement of requirements, that are often text-based and can be viewed as specific kinds of business rules.  David Cuyler of Sandia offered to provide a point of contact from the business rules work to the SE DSIG group to help explore its potential application to the statement of requirements. Both the BEI DTF and the SE DSIG will continue to share information and use joint meeting discussions to identify areas of common interest or potential synergy.

Next SE DSIG Meeting.
The next SE DSIG Meeting is planned for 1-2 days during the week of April 26-30 in St Louis in conjunction with the OMG Technical meeting. Potential agenda topics include follow-up discussions with BEITF and MANTIS, and an informational session on SysML.


Sanford Friedenthal
Lockheed Martin Corp
(703) 293-5557